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Hardcover | $58.00 Short | £39.95 | ISBN: 9780262112840 | 536 pp. | 8 x 9 in | 251 illus., 20 in color| May 2004

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Architecture's New Media

Principles, Theories, and Methods of Computer-Aided Design


Computer-aided design (CAD) technology has already changed the practice of architecture, and it has the potential to change it even more radically. With Architecture's New Media, Yehuda Kalay offers a comprehensive exposition of the principles, methods, and practices that underlie architectural computing. He discusses the aspects of information technology that are pertinent to architectural design, analyzes the benefits and drawbacks of particular computational methods, and looks at the potential of emerging computational techniques to affect the future of architectural design.

CAD technology, introduced in the postwar era and adopted in everyday architectural practice beginning in the 1970s, is now so indispensable that, as William Mitchell observes in his foreword, architectural practice without it is "as unimaginable as writing without a word processor." Yet, Kalay argues, it has had little qualitative effect. This book provides a detailed introduction for practitioners, educators, students, and researchers to aspects of CAD that go beyond the improvements in drafting, modeling, and rendering for which it is commonly used. Computer-aided architectural design (CAAD) is capable of modeling and manipulating objects (not merely their graphical representations), reasoning about and predicting performance of design solutions, generating new design solutions through algorithmic and other methods, managing vast amounts of information, and taking advantage of opportunities offered by the Internet for collaboration across time and space and for design of the virtual "space" of the Internet itself.

Architecture's New Media covers five main topics: design methods and computer technology and the relationship between computers and design; the principles of communication and representation; generative design methods; the advantages of computational methods for predicting and evaluating the performance of design solutions; and current and future developments in technology, including collaborative design, intelligent design assistants, construction automation, and virtual design environments.

About the Author

Yehuda E. Kalay is Professor of Architecture at the University of California, Berkeley.


“This book delivers a lot of very palatable information and is ideal for the interested undergraduate...” —Neil Spiller, The Architectural Review


"Yehuda Kalay masterfully charts the accelerating transformation of the practice of architecture under the relentless onslaught of information technology. His comprehensive new introduction to design computing is an indispensable navigational tool for those trying to understand the past, present, and future of the digital in architecture."
Branko Kolarevic, Department of Architecture, University of Pennsylvania

"Yehuda Kalay chronicles the innovations that have made CAD so pervasive in architectural practice today, and shows why that practice is poised to address a much wider range of issues than it has previously. He does this by portraying, in simple language, the principles, theories, and methods that he believes will be the foundation of the next wave forward—architecture's new media."
Thomas Seebohm, School of Architecture and Integrated Centre for Visualization, Design and Manufacturing, University of Waterloo, Canada

"This book is an excellent introduction to media and information technology for architecture and related disciplines. It provides an up-to-date history of these fields and introduces a wide variety of digital technologies to students of design and construction."
Charles Eastman, Professor in the Colleges of Architecture and Computer Science, Georgia Institute of Technology

Architecture’s New Media is a very ambitious endeavor to look more deeply into the basic tenets underlying the application of information technology to architecture, and the impacts these developments have had on architectural practice and its products during the last few decades. It will serve as both an excellent introduction to the field and a catalyst for futher creativity.”
Per Christiansson, IT in Civil Engineering, Aalborg University, Denmark